The June, 2013 Edition of Target Shooter Magazine is now available online, in PDF format. This month’s issue contains gear reviews, match reports, and a feature on handloading for the .204 Ruger cartridge. As ever, Target Shooter boasts plenty of great, large-format photos. Optics get considerable play this month with a comparison test of spotting scopes by Richard Utting, and an in-depth review of the Vortex Razor HD 5-20x50mm riflescope by Chris Parkin. There’s plenty of great reading material this month — and it’s all free to read online. (Be patient while downloading the PDF file).
Laurie Holland has authored two major articles in the June issue of Target Shooter Magazine. First, Laurie reviews the latest “Mk. 2″ version of Seb Lambang’s joy-stick bipod. Laurie found that Seb’s new “Joy-Pod” was beautifully built and performs “as advertised”. Laurie writes: “The coarse leg adjustment using the ratchet lock is excellent, allowing quick and easy set-up. The overall stability was better than on the Mk.1 — provided I loaded the butt slightly to push the bi-pod forwards and take up the small amount of slack that shows in the mechanism/joystick-head. I thought the Mk.1 prototype was a winner/game-changer. The Mk.2 is a further and noticeable improvement on that.”
Laurie has also compiled a very authoritative feature story on reloading for the .204 Ruger cartridge. Laurie discusses the available brass, powder, and projectile options for this popular cartridge. Laurie also includes Ballistics tables so you can compare performance with various loads. If you own a .204 Ruger rifle, or plan to get one, Laurie’s .204 Ruger story is definitely a “Must-Read”. This is Part One of a two-part series by Holland.
Hornady has a handy new product will helps eliminate shadows when you’re working in your reloading area. Hornady’s Lock-N-Load LED light strip places light right where you need it. This is especially useful when using a progressive press. With progressives, you need to watch multiple cartridges in various stages of loading. Good lighting helps you ensure cases aren’t split, powder levels are correct, and bullets are seated straight.
Designed to be affixed to your press, the light strip mounts six (6) long-lasting LED lights in a line. The low-profile light strip has an adhesive backer for easy attachment. Just “peel and stick” to attach the LED strip directly to your press. Watch the video below to see how it’s done.
While Hornady’s light strip was made to be attached to loading presses, this useful device can be affixed anywhere you need extra light on your loading bench or work areas. The strip plugs into any 110 volt outlet, so you never have to replace batteries. The LED strip retails for about $15.00. CLICK HERE for more details.
Product Tip from Boyd Allen. We welcome reader submissions
Magpul is now offering 40-round capacity PMAG GEN M3 magazines for AR-platform rifles chambered for .223 Rem/5.56×45. Just 2 1/8″ longer than a 30-round Magpul magazine, the new 40-rounder will fit and function in standard AR mag wells. Magpul claims that: “The new PMAG 40 is just as reliable, durable, and compatible as the PMAG 30.”
Magpul’s new 40-round magazines should prove popular with 3-Gun competitors. The extra 10 rounds can reduce the number of mag changes, which should allow 3-gunners to shave seconds off stage times. As with other latest-generation PMAGs, the new PMAG 40s feature an over-insertion stop catch that prevents the magazine from being slammed too far into the gun during fast changes. This stop catch prevents mag damage and lessens the chance of a malfunction. For LEO and Military personnel using select fire ARs, Magpul notes that: “The optimized magazine spring can handle feeding at cyclic rates over 1150 rounds per minute.”
Major vendors, such as Brownells, will be selling the PMAG 40s very soon. Brownells is charging $19.95 for the PMAG 40, product #100-012-633WB. We expect these things to sell like hotcakes. The editors of Guns.com note: “These magazines are going to be incredibly popular. Everyone likes extra ammo, even when it’s hard to find. And when most magazines with capacities greater than 30 run $40-$50, at these prices Magpul is going to tear through their competition.”
Brownell’s has prepared a useful video showing how to remove light rust from a firearm. This shows how to use soft cloths, polishes, and 0000 steel wool to eliminate light surface rust. CAUTION — if you have a very high gloss blued finish, ANY abrasive and even the finest grade of oiled steel wool can scratch or alter the finish. With something like a $1200.00 “Royal Blue” Colt Python, it may be better to tolerate a few small pits than to work it over with steel wool.
Watch Brownell’s Video on Rust Removal
Brownell’s technician, Steve Ostrem, notes that many things can promote rust — some you might not expect. In addition to moisture in the air, rust can be caused by the salts and oils from your hands, sweat, blood, or even insect repellent. Ostrem also observes that temperature changes can produce condensation which may lead to rust inside the gun that you don’t even notice: “In the real world we know that if you take the gun outside, sooner or later, it’s going to rust. When you come inside, wipe the gun down the first opportunity you get. If you bring a cold gun into a warm, humid house, you’re going to have an instant coating of moisture… make sure you get the gun dried off and you’ll avoid a lot of problems.”
We’ve conducted a comprehensive test of corrosion-fighters. Among the best products to prevent rust are Boeshield T-9, Corrosion-X, and Eezox. Break-Free also works well, but it leaves a somewhat greasy residue, and it did not perform as well during long-term salt exposure as did the other three products.
For long-term storage, nothing beats a coating of Cosmoline, Rig or similar grease. This provides a barrier layer that blocks the oxidation process, which is how rust forms. These greases performed extremely well in a comparison test of Rust Preventative Products performed by Brownell’s. CLICK HERE for Comparison Test.
Many of our readers travel far and wide during summer months, both on family vacations and to participate in shooting matches. When transporting firearms across state lines, it is vital to understand the laws and regulations that apply in each jurisdiction. Moreover, all of us need to stay informed about gun laws in our home states, since new laws are passed every year.
Indiana attorney Brian Ciyou has created an outstanding resource, Gun Laws by State (2013 Ed.) (GLBS), that explains firearms laws in all 50 states. Ciyou’s gun law treatise, available in both book and online (web) formats, covers state laws as well as key federal laws that apply in federal buildings, airports, National Parks, and school zones. There is a handy Reciprocity Map showing which states recognize concealed weapon permits issued in other jurisdictions. GLBS covers Reciprocal Carry for all 50 states, Constitutional Law, Federal Statutory Law, Use of Force, Criminal Provisions, Civil and Criminal Liability, Preemption, Federal Property Rules, and Interstate Transportation.
Amazingly, you can access all this important legal information for FREE on the GLBS website. Click on an interactive map to quickly review gun laws in any state. Navigation links provide quick access to particular topics, such as rules for Airline Travel, Amtrak, National Parks, and Federal properties. The web version of Gun Laws by State is updated regularly, and Ciyou even provides a GLBS Gun Laws Blog with current “news and views” on gun regulations nationwide. This Editor regularly references the Gun Laws by State website. I suggest readers bookmark the site, and consider buying the book if you frequently travel with firearms outside your home state. The printed book version costs $19.95, while a digital eBook is $9.95. Click here to purchase GLBS books and eBooks.
5.11 started out as part of the Royal Robbins line of clothing for rock climbers. 5.11 Tactical became a separate company in 2003, and now 5.11 Tactical ranks among the 250 fastest-growing private companies in the country. 5.11 Tactical gear is popular with military and LEO types as well as civilians who want tough, durable clothing. Recognizing the vast market for concealed carry gear, 5.11 has come up with a cleverly-designed under-shirt with twin pockets (right and left) for a small handgun.
5.11′s holster-shirt allows the wearer to comfortably carry a small revolver or auto-loader securely and discretely. When worn underneath an outer-garment such as a Hawaiian shirt, the carry weapon doesn’t print. Riding under the arm in a 6.5″ x 7.5″ pocket, your firearm is hidden from view but easily accessible. The opaque mesh concealment pockets feature reinforced fabric support panels over the shoulder to prevent sagging when carrying. The main body of the shirt is constructed of Dri-X-treme, an anti-microbial, quick-dry fabric. This shirt, made from an 80% polyster/20% Spandex blend, is designed to fit snugly. The 5.11 holster-shirt is offered in both Crew-Neck and V-Neck versions, white or black, starting at about $60.00. An NRA signature version is sold through the NRA Store.
“Shooting Chrony” is a product name. “Shooting Chrony” should not describe (post-mortem) what you have been doing to your chronograph. Sooner or later all of us may make a mistake, and ventilate our chronograph. With luck, the bullet just “wings” your chronograph, and the damage is minor. But if you hit the unit smack dab in the middle, you may have to retire your chrono for good.
Recently, Forum member Jeff M. (aka “JRM850″) experienced a “low blow” that put his Shooting Chrony out of commission. With tongue firmly in cheek, Jeff started a Forum thread entitled Chronograph Not Picking Up Shots in Bright Sunlight Anymore. Looking at the photo below, the problem is obvious.
This was Jeff’s first chrono kill in 23 years of use, so we shouldn’t be too critical. Jeff explained: “I didn’t realize a friend was shifting from a 300-yard target to 100 yards.” The agent of destruction was a low-traveling 58gr V-Max running at 3415 fps. What happened? Well, when one is shooting at 300 yards, the trajectory will be higher than at 100 yards. We should say, however, that this may have been a low shot, or the 100-yard aiming point may have been placed lower to the ground (closer to the bottom of the target frame), as compared to the 300-yard aiming point.
Other Forum members offered some sarcastic responses:
Try it on an overcast day – it might work again.
It looks like the V-Max performed just about as advertised.
Aww…a little duct tape and some Super Glue and you’re good to go.
Double Check Your Aim Point and Trajectory BEFORE You Shoot
The lesson learned here is that you should never change targets (or aim points) without checking your bullet’s flight over the chronograph. We like to align the barrel so the bullet exits a good 6-8 inches above the electronics (check your manual for recommended shot height). In addition, we always boresight the barrel so we can see the actual target through the bore. Then, with gun UNLOADED, bolt removed and action clear, we look back down the barrel so we can see daylight through the bore, with the gun set on solid rests. If you look through the middle of the “V” formed by the sky screen supports and you can’t see light shining through the barrel’s bore, you probably have a set-up problem and you should re-align the rifle.
Use a Test Backer to Confirm Your Bullet Trajectory
You can put tape on the support rods about 6″ up from the unit. This helps you judge the correct vertical height when setting up your rifle on the bags. Another trick is to hang a sheet of paper from the rear skyscreen and then use a laser boresighter to shine a dot on the paper (with the gun planted steady front and rear). This should give you a good idea (within an inch or so) of the bullet’s actual flight path through the “V” over the light sensors. Of course, when using a laser, never look directly at the laser! Instead shine the laser away from you and see where it appears on the paper.
After you have used the laser boresighter to get the rifle centered up in the chrono’s “sweet spot”, confirm with a test shot or two (see photo). Even when using an in-chamber laser boresighter, it is not uncommon for the bullet’s actual point of impact to be different than the laser’s dot location.
Have you been struggling to find brass, powder, and (especially) primers? No luck finding rimfire ammunition or loaded ammo for your pistols or hunting rifles? Well, now there’s a free web-based search service that can help you find what you need. The service costs nothing and you don’t have to sign up to run searches.
GunBot.net employs “search bots” to scour the internet for available inventories of ammo, powder, primers, brass and magazines. GunBot.net checks the inventories of over sixty retailers, including leading vendors AmmoMan, Bass Pro, Brownells, Cabelas, Cheaper Than Dirt, Grizzly, JG Sales, Dan Killough, Midsouth Shooters Supply, Midway USA, Powder Valley, Rainier Arms, Sinclair Int’l, Sportsman’s Guide,, Wholesale Hunter, and Wideners.
Results can be sorted by price or time (most recent results first). You can even get email alerts notifying you when the product you need is available. (To get alerts, you must first log-in and create an account with GunBot.net. There is no charge for this service.) GunBot.net’s search spiders work constantly, so results are normally very current. Pages auto-refresh when new “matching items” are found.
Primers Found Efficiently with GunBot.net GunBot.net saves us time by instantly checking inventory at many dozens of online retailers. In May, we were looking high and low for large rifle magnum primers. Then a quick search with GunBot.net revealed that site sponsor Powder Valley, Inc. had some in stock. We placed our order and had the primers in our hands the next week. Here’s a screenshot showing primer inventories on June 17, 2013:
ThoseShirts.com offers a selection of T-shirts with pro-gun rights messages. Priced from $12.95 to $19.95, these shirts allow you to show your support for the Second Amendment. The shirts’ themes range from serious (“The Bill of Rights is not negotiable”), to sarcastic (“Less Flower Power… More Firepower”). Below are some of the more popular designs printed on the back of the 100% preshrunk heavyweight cotton shirts (some designs are front + back).
Today is Father’s Day, a special Sunday when we acknowledge our patriarchs and show our gratitude for all their hard work and sacrifice on our behalf, and the love they have shown us over the years. If you’re lucky, you’re reading this after having spent a day at the shooting range (or the local fishing hole, or golf course) with your Dad. The important thing is to get outside and do something you both enjoy together. If you haven’t finalized your Father’s Day planning, here are some suggestions:
1. Hand-wash and wax your father’s truck or car.
2. Clean your Dad’s rifles, or help him put together some handloads.
3. Take your dad out to a live music concert, go to a ball game, or maybe head down to the local fishin’ hole.
4. Go for a hike together or just a drive in the country.
5. Head down to Sears or the local hardware store and let you Dad pick out some new tools.
Whatever you choose to do with your father, use your time wisely. Turn off this computer, and go be with your father today. Do something with him that makes him smile. The time spent together is more important than any gift that comes in a box. And, if he lives far from you, give him a call and let him know how important he is to your life. Remind him of the old adage: “Good fathers make good sons”.
When my father, a disabled WW2 Army vet, passed away I received the flag that was draped on his coffin. On most days I fly one of those nylon flags that you can pick up at hardware or department stores. But on holidays, like today, and his birthday, Dad’s flag is out there snapping in the breeze on top of the pole. I find myself talking to him as it gets put up in the morning and comes down at sunset. Hope when the time comes one of my boys will fly my flag. — Bill Slattery Jr.
My father used to play with my brother and me in the yard. Mother would come out and say, “You’re tearing up the grass”! “We’re not raising grass,” Dad would reply, “We’re raising boys”. — Harmon Killebrew.
In response to a Bulletin article about Protective Eyewear, one of our Canadian readers posted a personal story. His account demonstrates the importance of wearing eye protection whenever you shoot — no matter what type of firearm you are using — even air rifles. We hope all our readers take this to heart. All too often at rifle matches we see shooters, even some top competitors, risking their vision by failing to wear eye protection.
Eye Protection — Lesson Learned by Nicholas from Canada
As a boy on a mixed farm on the plains the first shooting stick I owned was a Red Ryder BB gun. My Dad bought it for me as I showed a keen interest in the shooting and hunting sports. I was about 9 years old at the time.
We had literally thousands of sparrows in our large farm yard and they liked to roost on the steel railings in the barn loft. I took to slowly thinning out their ranks by flashlight at night as these little winged pests settled in the farm buildings.
One evening as I slayed sparrow after sparrow in the barn loft — with about a dozen farm cats following me to consume these easy meals, I fired at another bird centered in my flashlight beam.
However, my aim was a bit low — and the copper pellet hit the steel beam square on. Instantly I felt a sharp pain as the BB bounced back and hit me squarely between the eyes on the bridge of my nose – drawing blood from the partial penetration into the skin. A half inch either way and I’d have lost an eye!
Never, never, never shoot at any target with a steel background with any firearm, even a BB gun – is the hard lesson I learned, and wear the best shooting glasses that money can buy!
PLEASE REMEMBER THAT!!
Editor’s Comment: Among competitive pistol shooters, the use of safety eyewear is universal. You’ll never see Rob Leatham, Julie Golob, or Jerry Miculek competing without eye protection — for good reason. The handgun sports’ governing bodies effectively enforce mandatory eye protection policies. We wish the same could be said for competitive rifle shooting. We often see benchrest, High Power, and F-Class competitors shooting without eye protection. We’ve heard all the excuses, yet none of them trump the safety considerations involved.
We recommend that all shooters and hunters employ eye protection whenever they use firearms or are at a location where live fire is taking place. You only have two eyes. A tiny bullet fragment or ricochet is all it takes to cause permanent blindness in one or both eyes. As rifle shooters, we place our eyes a couple inches away from a combustion chamber operating at pressures up to 70,000 psi. I know quite a few guys who will religiously put on safety glasses when running a lathe or a drill press, yet the same guys won’t use eye protection when shooting their rifles — simply because it is “inconvenient”. That’s nuts. It doesn’t matter is you are a cub scout or a multi-time National Champion — you should wear eye protection.
Be wise — protect your eyes. To learn more about eyewear safety standards, and to learn about the latest options in ANSI Z87-certified protective eyewear, read our article on Eye Protection for Shooters.
With bullets in short supply and prices rising, here’s an opportunity for you folks located in the middle of the country who can visit Missouri. Sierra offers discounted bullets at its Factory Outlet store in Sedalia, Missouri. Sierra says: “If you happen to be in our neck of the woods, you can purchase available bullet seconds and our full line of products directly from our outlet store”.
Sierra’s Factory Outlet inventory is constantly changing and no guarantees are made as to product availability. Bullet seconds are sold by the pound and are limited to 100 pounds per bullet type and a total of 300 pounds per day per person. There is a limit of 25 pounds of mixed bullets per day. Bullet seconds are for private consumption and not for resale! Factory seconds may include blemished bullets and mixed bullets, so weigh and measure each bullet prior to loading! Factory seconds must be picked up in person and will not be shipped.
Sierra Production Facility Tours
Along with Factory Outlet sales, Sierra Bullets offers tours of its production plant. If you are in the vicinity, why not head over to Sedalia and see how Sierra bullets are made. Sierra states: “Visitors are welcome in our facility — advance reservations are not required for groups smaller than 10. Tours are available Monday – Friday, 8:30 am to 4:40 pm. Large groups will require one week notice, but for families or individuals, come on in and we’ll make the delay as short as possible. The tour will take approximately 45 minutes. There is no cost for the tour.”
For more information, call Sierra at (888) 223-3006 or send email to: sierra[at]sierrabullets.com .
Story tip by EdLongrange. We welcome reader submissions.